Individual IT parks differ, but can generally be categorized as i) Horizontal parks that straddle a number of sectors and ii) Sector-specific parks in knowledge/technology intensive areas. Even further, composition and focus can vary widely between parks. To make sense of differences, this study assessed 6 parks in 5 countries in regards to their capital, linkages, infrastructure and people. These parks were:
- Hitec City, India
- IT Park-Hubli, India
- SSP, Singapore
- CFZ, Malaysia
- Taedok Valley, Korea
- ZSP, China
In the survey, there was significant variance in the business models for IT parks, though it is observed that government is best suited to facilitate the development of IT parks, rather than developing and managing IT parks themselves. Governments can do so by:
Creating enabling infrastructure
Assisting in the acquisition of land
Developing enabling policies and regulations
Once up and running, IT parks can usually expect an average return between 15-20% though this can be higher if ancillary infrastructure such as retail, housing or exhibition centers are provided. For the enabling governments, return comes in the form of increased investment, tax revenue, and positive spillovers into real estate, employment and retail.
Finally, this study provides insight into key learnings such as:
- Having the right product-services mix is critical;
- A supportive and proactive government is key;
- World class physical and virtual infrastructure represents bare necessities;
- A judicious mix of anchor occupants and smaller companies helps;
- Availability of equity financing options are essential pre-requisites;
- Providing incubation facilities in the park is key;
- Linkages with research institutions are critical, while skill linkages are essential for all types of products and services;
- A vibrant and pro-active IT park management team represents an added advantage.
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